I believe in Courage

Jordyn - Portland, Oregon
Entered on December 4, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: courage
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I believe in courage. That is one really open statement. I feel like many people would say that they believe in bravery. The question is… could they justify it? I don’t know if many people could. What would be your response if someone came up to you and asked, “Do you believe in courage?” If you would answer yes and they asked, “Why?” could you tell them? I was thinking about that as I sat in Language Arts with Mr. Knox telling us about a “This I Believe” essay that we had to write. I was excited at first because there was so much to write about and when I started to think about courage I decided, hey I have a great story to tell and I am sure that it shows that being brave can make a difference in your life.

I was on my way to the barn where I was taking lessons once a week. I really enjoyed the rides I had periodically but it didn’t feel like my life, yet. Just as an added bit of information, right now my life consists of five things. They are eating, sleeping, school, horses and more horses. That is important to know when it comes to the outcome of my tale.

I was always a timid child. Never really letting myself fully leave my shell. All of a sudden, I was on top of ponies that seemed giant and wasn’t sure if I would survive if I, for some reason, did an “unplanned dismount.” That is what my mind was always thinking before I mounted. Yet once I was on that horses back, I was in another world. It felt so right. Like that was where I was meant to be. Still somewhere in my gut I knew that this was a dangerous sport and I wondered if I were to fall if I would be able to get back on.

The first time I fell, I was worried about getting back on. I almost refused. I can still remember the flood of thoughts that ran through my mind as I tumbled to the ground. As I landed with a thud on the dirt-cushioned ground my mind was screaming, “I told you so! Never get on a horse again!” Yet the part of me that lived for that hour once a week when I could be me, and only me, told me that I had to get back on. As I climbed back on that horse, against my better judgement, I felt happy again.

Since then I have been riding steadily, with no end in sight. My bravery gave me the life that I have now. The one that I love. Forever I will remember that moment as the turning point in my life. If I hadn’t gotten back on I wouldn’t have some of the friends I have now; I would most-likely still be hiding in my “shell of safety” and would not have 5 days of my week taken up by horses. Those things I just listed are my life. So that means that I would have a totally different life if that happy craving side of my head hadn’t said, “Get back on that horse right now, Jordyn!” Sometimes we need to overcome the most frightening things in our lives and do what we love. With a little bit of courage your life could change a whole lot. It changed mine.

Oh yeah, I also wanted you to know that those “unplanned dismounts” aren’t so bad anymore, now that I have courage on my side.